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  • Writer's pictureShruti Mouli

I don't know is a great answer!

“I don’t know what I’m doing and it’s the not knowing that makes it interesting.” - Philip Glass

Stop! Reflect! Think!

Think about the quote you just read!!! What did it mean to you?

While you ponder, I want to tell you my thoughts... and I hope that’s ok!

In the recent past, I have been thinking a lot about the whole concept of not knowing. And you know what, it’s occurred to me that from the time we have been able to think for ourselves the “I don’t know” answer has never been encouraged.

Think of yourself as a student in the classroom. When the teacher asked you a question and you didn’t know the answer – it was frowned upon or your fellow students laughed at you. When you said I don’t know at home, your parents were never impressed. There was always this unspoken pressure to know everything at all times.

I wonder now, how different our lives would be if we had permission as children to not know everything people around us thought we should know. I also wonder how different our lives would be if we had embraced the whole “I don’t know, let me find out” concept from when we were children!

I can’t help but think that it would have made us curious to unravel the mysteries of the world. Maybe it would have given us a whole different perspective of the world, and we would have had the courage to explore and learn new things. Maybe the fear we have around failure would actually be non-existent because we lived in a world where not knowing something and exploring to find the answers was the norm.

Let’s take my life for example. At one point in my life – I had everything going for me. I thought I knew where I was going, and I had it all figured out. But my happiness factor was always a 5/10 because there was the constant pressure to know it all and have everything under control.

I’d had enough and I decided to let it all go! “I don’t know” became a mantra for my life. I didn’t know what I wanted out of my life anymore and I didn’t know which direction to take. But guess what??


It allowed me to embrace uncertainty. And all of a sudden, I found myself doing things I would have never done, because I was trying to make sense of all the new things that were happening around me. I was constantly learning new things and the fear to explore and discover was slowly diminishing. And I was beginning to rediscover myself, my thoughts, my life and my perspective on everything I had ever known. And most importantly my life was FUN… because the pressure to know it all was lifted.

And I was giving myself permission to make mistakes and learn from them. I was giving myself permission to say “I don’t know” and using that to learn something new and through this I was becoming a lifelong learner.

I don’t know if this would have happened if I hadn’t embraced the whole “I don’t know” concept!

So, is “I don’t know” the greatest answer in the world? In my opinion it is. It opens up a world of possibilities, experiences and perspectives. It challenges you to be an explorer and it helps to keep you and your life interesting simply by trying to find out what you don’t know. It makes you brave, curious and fun! And what’s not to like about this?

I DON’T KNOW! I’ll tell you when I find out!

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